Dave Morehead pitches a no-hitter against Cleveland

ON THIS DATE (September 16, 1965) ... Firstbaseman Lee Thomas, with two down in the ninth-inning, dug out his pitcher's low throw out of the dirt and Dave Morehead took his place in baseball history with a no-hit game. His victims this night were the Cleveland Indians as Morehead beat them 2 to 0.

By just one pitch, a wide one on a 3-2 count in the second inning to Rocky Colavito, Morehead missed pitching the 10th perfect game ever hurled in the major leagues. Colavito, who opened the second inning with his walk, was the only Cleveland player to reach base. He then remained on first while Morehead struck out the side.

Limited to one single by Luis Tiant, until there were two out in the sixth inning, the Red Sox scored on Jim Gosger's infield single and a triple by Dalton Jones. They made it 2 to 0 in the seventh when Thomas lofted a home run, his 20th, into the grandstand in right field.

Tension mounted as Morehead, retiring batter after batter, grew closer to achieving the pitcher's dream. Manager Birdie Tebbetts of the Indians, pulled out all the stops in the ninth inning. This was, not so much to stop the no-hitter, but for a victory. Leading off the ninth was Larry Brown, a right-handed hitter, who hit for catcher Duke Sims. Morehead's first pitch was a ball and on the second pitch Brown hit a liner at shortstop Ed Bressoud, who with both hands over his head, grabbed it for the first out. Next batting for Tiant came Lou Clinton, and again the first pitch was a ball. On the second pitch Clinton lined to center and Gosger for the second out.

One batter now remained and it was the turn of Dick Howser, the number one man in the Indian batting order. But manager Tebbetts sent Vic Davalillo a left-handed hitter, to pinch-hit. Catcher Bob Tillman and Ed Bressoud walked over to the mound and conferred with Morehead.  They resumed their positions and Bressoud moved toward left and secondbaseman Dalton Jones shifted a bit toward second.

The small crowd of 2370 leaned forward as Morehead's first pitch was a fastball that crossed the plate by letters for strike one. The second pitch was also a fastball just under letters and again Davalillo took it for strike two.  Morehead's next pitch was a curve and it broke low just under the knees for ball one. The next pitch was low but Davalillo didn't dare take it, and swung as the ball bounded toward Morehead.  The ball bounded off the heel of his glove and dropped on the ground to a third-base.  Davalillo, one of the fastest runners in baseball, was streaking toward first and Morehead realized his no-hitter was at stake. He pounced on the ball and fired it toward first. The throw was low and in the dirt. Davalillo was 20 inches from the bag as Lee Thomas dug the ball out from the dirt for out number three.

 

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CLEVELAND INDIANS

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BOSTON RED SOX

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W-Dave Morehead (10-16)
L-Luis Tiant (11-11)
Attendance - 1247

 3B-Jones (Bost)

 HR-Thomas (Bost)